Early reports of shooter at OSU spur look at Ohio gun laws

Caitlin Dickson
·Reporter
Police respond to reports of an active shooter on campus at Ohio State University on Monday, Nov. 28, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo: Tom Dodge/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)
Police respond to reports of an active shooter on campus at Ohio State University on Nov. 28, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo: Tom Dodge/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)

One suspect is reportedly dead and at least nine people are being treated for non-life-threatening injuries after a male attacker reportedly drove his car into a crowd of pedestrians and then stabbed them with a butcher knife on the Columbus campus of Ohio State University Monday morning. School officials initially reported the incident as a shooting but later stated that “injuries include stab wounds, injury by motor vehicle and other injuries that are being evaluated.”

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Ohio is one of the most gun-friendly states in the country, with both concealed and open carry permitted under state law (PDF); however, restrictions apply to colleges and universities.

Slideshow: Attack at Ohio State University in Columbus >>>

On campus grounds, concealed handguns are not permitted even with a license, unless the gun is locked inside a vehicle on campus. Open carry on school grounds is, therefore, also not permitted.

More on Ohio’s gun laws generally:

  • According to the National Rifle Association, Ohio law does not require a permit or license in order to purchase or possess a rifle, handgun or shotgun.

  • A license is required for Ohioans age 21 and over to carry a concealed handgun in public, but open carry is permitted under state law without a license or permit in most public places.

  • Ohio law does, however, have restrictions on firearm possession in certain “no-carry” zones, including schools, though there are a few exceptions.

  • The “knowing possession” of a firearm is prohibited in any school building, campus, bus or school activity in Ohio. However, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, “This prohibition does not apply to a concealed handgun license holder who possesses a handgun in a school safety zone if the person does not enter into a school building or onto school premises and is not at a school activity and is in compliance with federal law,” nor does it apply to a “ concealed handgun license holder who possesses a handgun in a school safety zone as the driver or passenger in a motor vehicle while immediately in the process of picking up or dropping off a child.”

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